Separatists' poll boycott call fails in Ganderbal

People in this central Kashmir district on Wednesday defied poll boycott call by separatists and threats from militant organisations by coming out in large numbers to vote for their favourite candidates.

Long queues were seen outside polling booths in Kangan Assembly segment of the district on Wednesday morning. At a polling booth in Ganiwan on the Srinagar-Ladakh national highway 80 per cent of the people exercised their democratic rights. 

The polling had total of 809 votes. The situation was more or less the same in Kangan Assembly consistency which is a traditional seat of National Conference Gujjar leader and Forest Minister Mian Altaf Ahmad.

“We have no concern with separatist boycott call. We are with Mian sahib who stands by us in thick and thin always,” Nazir Ahmad of Ganiwan told Deccan Herald. Ishtiaq Ahmad, a student who was waiting for his turn to vote outside a polling station housed in a decrepit primary school building said, “Politicians forget about people once elected to power but we are lucky that we have a selfless representative like Mian Altaf.”

However, polling was moderate in Gnadebral Assembly segment, represented by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. 

“We gave votes to Omar in last election, but he ignored us continuously. We want to convey our resentment by voting for opposition candidates this time. But we are not with the boycott,” said Aijaz Ahmad, a shopkeeper.

Some minor incidents of stone pelting were reported from Khurhama , Tulmulla and Larsun village of Ganderbal. The district witnessed overall 45 per cent polling, highest in the constituency comprising Srinagar and Budgam districts besides Ganderbal.

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